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Showdown set for construction heavyweights

By Sean Ryan

The Interstate-94 contract out for bids could turn into a high-stakes rematch between the builders that duked it out for work on the Marquette Interchange.

In Wisconsin’s corner, there are the three in-state builders that form Milwaukee Constructors LLC: Edward Kraemer & Sons Inc., Plain; Lunda Construction Co., Black River Falls; and Zenith Tech Inc., Waukesha. In the opposite corner, there’s the heavyweight contender from Chicago, Walsh Construction Co.

Representatives from Kraemer, Lunda and Zenith attended the Dec. 16 pre-bid for the contract to rebuild I-94 between College and Howard avenues, a job heavy on retaining walls and bridges. They all signed in as members of Milwaukee Constructors. Of course, Walsh also had people in the room.

The trio of local contractors went 3-2 when competing against Walsh for the major Marquette Interchange contracts. They broke up after finishing the Marquette in fall 2008, only to reunite late last year to win the contract to repair bridges on the Zoo Interchange.

Stay tuned on Monday to see if the trio and Walsh both appear as plan holders on the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s list of I-94 bidders. If they are, we’ll be watching when bids are opened for I-94 on Jan. 20 to see if the local team can keep its edge.

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